Fresh Baked: October 22, 2021

Welcome to another Friday!! They just seem to come faster and faster don’t they? We are almost at the end of October and the fall temperatures have become more prevalent and we’re starting to see some of the leaves change colors. 

Don’t forget, any $10 spent in the store gets you this kit for free.

Let’s see what new items our fabulous designers have for us this week.

Have you picked up the October Monthly Mix? I love those little gnomes.

And remember. Any 10 completed challenges gets you this great kit as a reward!

Tutorial Tuesday (Photoshop Elements)

Custom Word Art using Only Fonts!

Greetings and salutations! Yesterday was Thanksgiving in Canada, which isn’t quite the event our neighbours to the south have grown into, but I still spent part of the day in a food coma. Let me offer you a little tip – don’t wait too long to buy your turkeys. Demand here was significantly greater than supply; even Costco didn’t have any turkeys this weekend. If you see turkeys in your supermarket, grab one! But I digress…

As you may recall, at the end of my last tutorial (with the childish fonts and dingbats) I said I’d show you how to use fonts and dingbats to create your own word art. You might also recall my inspiration was my grand-daughter. The little girl who eats like a lumberjack… I’m using Cookie Dough, Amateur Comic Regular and MTF Sweet Dings Regular today. For more guidance on how to choose fonts that will look good together, I have a tutorial for you here.

When I’m creating things like this I always use a 12×12 canvas with a transparent background. I like the larger image so I can see better how it all works together and the extra room for tweaking. The end result can easily be resized later.

I’m going to start with Amateur Comic Regular. It doesn’t matter what colour I use, because I’m going to change it later. But I do want it centered and I want both Asian Text and Anti-aliasing on. The Asian Text control helps with kerning – spacing between individual characters. In later versions there is a kerning control, labeled Spacing but it doesn’t work quite as well as actual kerning. The Anti-aliasing control gives your fonts smooth, clean edges; it just diminishes the jaggedy pixels you’d see with larger text.

When using fonts the resulting layers need to be Simplified before you can manipulate them, so that any changes to that layer only affect that layer. If I typed out this text but didn’t Simplify the layer, then changed the font (as I’ll be doing in a minute) this layer would change to that font too. So always remember to spell-check. grammar-check then Simplify by right-clicking on the layer in the Layers Panel and choosing Simplify Layer from the dropdown menu.

I may need to make some further placement adjustments to this text, so I opted to break up the layer into two chunks of text. With the Rectangular Marquee tool, I outlined the second line.

Next, I Cut that line away from the first line: Edit>Cut [keyboard shortcut: CTRL/CMD>X]

And then without any further ado, I Pasted it back onto the canvas: Edit>Paste [CTRL/CMD>V]

Now I can move each line around, resize and reposition as needed.

I changed my font to Cookie Dough. For this word, I’m going to put each letter on its own layer for now. (If you don’t intend to make many changes to the text, you won’t need to do these steps.) So I typed a D, Committed the Operation and then carried on. You can toggle between the Move Tool and the Text Tool by clicking [V] for Move, [T] for Text.

I wanted the letters to be a little off-kilter and shifted them around until I was happy with their positions.

At this point, I’m planning to turn the letters into donuts so I’ll need to Simplify each layer. Because I was only rotating the letters before, I could wait until everybody was where I wanted them then I could Simplify in one step instead of 6. I Activated all 6 layers by clicking on the top letter layer, holding down the SHIFT key and clicking on the bottom letter layer. Then I right-clicked and chose Simplify Layer. Boom!

The layers can now be Merged into a single layer.

I added a MTF Sweet Dings Regular donut. Dingbats are drawings that correspond to the alphabet. The donut’s the letter W.

And of course, I Simplified the layer…

… made a Copy layer: right-click>Duplicate Layer>OK [CTRL/CMD>J] and used the Paint Bucket tool [K] to Fill the bare donut part with a golden brown colour. More about that step in a bit. I made some Copies of the DONUTS layer [CTRL/CMD>J] so I can separate out certain elements of the text for enhancement. I added a Layer Mask – click on the icon at the top of the Layers panel that looks like a blue square with a white circle in the centre – to the bottom DONUTS layer so I can remove parts of the image without actually deleting the pixels. This is the best way to remove parts of an image because if there’s an OOPS!, the accidentally-erased part can be painted back in. Remember, black conceals, white reveals – THE BACKGROUND. Using the Eraser tool and with white in the foreground I removed all the sprinkles. To paint back an OOPS, toggle to black in the foreground [X] and fix it.

To make the Layer Mask part of the layer just Simplify Layer. Right-click in between the mask and the image thumbnail.

Next, I just want an outline of the frosted area of each letter. With a Layer Mask, I removed the sprinkles and the cakey parts. It doesn’t have to be perfect because the other layers will conceal any wobbles.

I like to make more Copy layers than I think I’m going to need, which usually is a good idea. Here I’m going to just leave the sprinkles, but I’ve already done the hard work.

 

I CTRL/CMD>clicked on the layer thumbnail (the tiny image of what’s on each layer at the far left of the layer in the Layers panel) for the first DONUTS layer with no sprinkles. That Selected the edges of that layer. See the marching ants?

Then with the topmost Copy layer active, I just Deleted what I Selected. [CTRL/CMD>D or just hit Delete] and voilà! All that’s left are the sprinkles.

Now to get some colour into the picture. With the first of our DONUTS layer active, I’m going to add a Fill Layer. The reason for this is that the results are much cleaner than if I used the Paint Bucket. Layer>New Fill Layer>Solid Color.

Tick that Use Previous Layer to Create a Clipping Mask box and let Elements do the work.

The Color Picker opens and I chose a nice golden brown.

 

The Fill Layer and the layer it’s clipped to need to be Merged, so click>SHIFT>click on the two layers, right-click and choose Merge Layers [CTRL/CMD>E]

The frosting layer will be Filled with white using the Paint Bucket tool [K].

Make sure you’re not going to leak!

I also used a Fill Layer to make the sprinkles layer pink. I won’t show screenshots of those steps because that’s unnecessarily repetitive! But I will show you screenshots of the Fill Layer for the Amateur Comic text. I want it to be pink too.

I decided the pink text lacked a bit of presence so I’ve chosen to add a white Stroke to the outside. Edit>Stroke (Outline) Selection.

8 pixels makes a nice stroke for titles. I’ll position it to the Outside so it doesn’t hide any of the pink.

I think it looks good now.

I went on to use the Paint Bucket to frost the dingbat donuts, change some of the sprinkles to purple and position the layers so they look right. Then I Merged all the layers. To have my word art (and work!) saved for later, I’m going to Save As> [CTRL/CMD>SHIFT>S].

I have a Jan’s Elements folder on my laptop, so that’s where I’ll put it. I named the file Donuts Word Art and will save it as a PNG so the background stays transparent.

Smallest/Slow Compression and No Interlace will preserve the word art for me in the cleanest and neatest format so I can use it as the title for my layout.

I’ve been told there are a LOT of new members of the GingerScraps family, so I’m going to do a few basic tutorials in the coming weeks to help them feel more comfortable here. Stay tuned!

PDF Version: https://bit.ly/3FNtvOy

Fresh Baked: October 8, 2021

Did you all have fun during the DSD party? There was so much to do. Did you find some great bargains?

Remember when you spend $10 in the store, you get this great kit for free.

The designers have been busy. There are a lot of new things in the store this week.

POLKA DOT CHICKS

MEMORY MOSAIC

AIMEE HARRISON DESIGNS

CHERE KAY DESIGNS

AIMEE HARRISON DESIGNS

TAMI MILLER DESIGNS

Have you gotten a jump on those challenges with the new goodies from DSD? Remember any 10 finished challenges gets you this great kit as a reward.

Tutorial Tuesday (Fonts)

Fun Fonts for Layouts about Kids

It’s been a while since I did a post about fonts. I didn’t really think there were that many more “types” of fonts to explore but Ellen (gmae) pointed out to me that there are categories I’ve overlooked. I have to tell you about this because it blew my mind totally. Ellen has created a spreadsheet of ALL the tutorials I’ve posted here – all 240-some – and made it sortable by a bunch of different terms. The amount of work she put in just boggles my mind! An unintended result of all her work is that she’s made some very important suggestions about where I could take you all next. One of those suggestions was to explore some fonts specifically suited to layouts about children. So I spent some time at dafont.com, looking at hundreds of fonts and selected this baker’s dozen along with five sets of dingbats I think you’ll like. (And while I was there, I came up with some new categories to share later!) Okay so let’s get a look at what I like. PS… each font name is linked to the website for one-click access. And they’re all FREE!

First up is Cookie Dough. What kid doesn’t love cookies (other than my second daughter)? This would be a great choice for a title or for some custom word art.

Eye Monsta made me think of my two grandsons right away, especially A-boy. J-man is more cerebral and a bit less inclined toward monster-like behaviour. It’s another title-suitable font but is legible enough that it could be used for both subtitles and journaling too.

I like how solid Childhood is. It looks like it’s been filled in by a child and has a bit of grubby awesomeness too. Multi-use fonts are worth the download.

Space Out comes in two different styles. It’s another good title/word art font, don’t you think?

This font, Crayon Kids, looks like an older child was the writer. It can be fun for journaling and subtitles. It would also be a good choice for word art, when combined by a more fancy font.

I LOVE Calvin and Hobbes!! Did you see the cross-over to Bloom County? An adult Calvin (click to view) is tracked down by Opus and it’s perfect!

This cute font would make a good title, but is also legible enough for journaling. Helloo Kidos will be joining my collection.

Tiny Friends is like Eye Monsta… very child-oriented and fun. And it has so much potential for creative alterations!

I think Childhood Memories looks like it was hand=printed by an older child/teen. Great choice for journaling.

I like Amateur Comic for journaling too. It’s a bit less organized than Childhood Memories, but still easily read.

Another good font for journaling and subtitles is Gilles’ Comic Handwriting. It’s a nice blend of careful and a bit rushed.

Who doesn’t adore Lego? Toys comes with four different versions and has a lot of potential.

I think the name of this last font is totally appropriate. It’s Kindergarten!

Now I’ve got some dingbat collections for you. What are dingbats? They’re accessed as fonts, but instead of letters, each character is a drawing. They’re really a lot of fun and have a multitude of possibilities. The first set is called Seaside Things. The drawings are child-like, but not necessarily childish.

When my own kids were small, they all loved the Mr Men books. We had a box full of them and when I saw this set of dingbats, I was transported back to bedtime stories.

We can’t leave the girls out. Little Miss is a companion set to the Mr Men books and the dingbats too!

DT Rachel’s Toys is a bit more of a detailed set. I think there are a lot of ways these can be used.

And our last dingbat collection is MTF Sweet Dings. They’re all so cute!!

I’ve barely scratched the surface of the incredible choices you can find at dafont.com. There are other sources for free fonts too, if you’re interested. Next week I’m going to use two of the fonts and one of the dingbats to show you how to create your own word art. See if you can guess which ones. [Hint: I’m going to use it as a title for a layout featuring my granddaughter.] See you soon!

PDF Tutorial: https://bit.ly/3iBte7w

Designer Spotlight October 2021

Have You Met Christie (Scrappin’ Serenity)?

I’d like to introduce you all to Christie Dawn, whose wonderful designs are sold at GingerScraps under the Scrappin’ Serenity banner. We had a nice chat so I could know what to tell you about her. Here’s a transcript of our chat for your perusal.

J: Christie! So nice to see you! Let’s get comfy and get to know each other. First, tell me, how long have you been designing?

C: I started dabbling in 2009 and opened my first store in 2010! Wow…hard to believe it’s been 11 years!

J: Hey, that’s about the same time I started learning about digital scrapbooking. When I look at those first layouts, I cringe. I know why I wanted to start digiscrapping – saving money, not having to clean up, and being able to use kits over and over and over. What made you decide to design?

C: I was a stay at home mom, and I just needed an outlet.  I loved Scrapbooking, so I figured I might as well try it.

J: I didn’t actually start paper scrapping until 2005, long after my kiddos were grown up. When they were little I did things like counted cross-stitch and crochet. If digiscrapping would have been a thing then, I’d have been all over it! What do you use to create your designs?

C: I mostly design in Photoshop Elements 13, I should probably upgrade, but it still works, so why change!?

J: No kidding! If it ain’t broke… I do all of my digital stuff on a Dell laptop, sitting in a wing chair in my living room. Would you mind describing your design workplace?

C: Most of the time I work at home, downstairs, on my desktop.  But I do have a laptop I bring when we go camping and have worked from the RV many times.

J: My “other” creative space is a work-in-progress; I have so many boxes I haven’t even opened after our move… 17 months ago. Organizing it all is a big job! But back to you. Which of your current kits in the GS shop is your favourite? What makes it so?

C: Currently my Favorite Kit is – Gamer Girl.  We are big time gamers in my family!

J: My husband is a big gamer too. I’m not. Words with Friends is enough for me! Do you sing, or dance in the shower? I’ve been known to dance in mine a time or two…

C: Definitely Sing!  If I were to dance in the shower it would probably lead to a visit to the ER. lol.

J: I can relate – it didn’t end up in the ER but I discovered the shower base needed some no-skid strips that way. Here’s another odd-ball question: If time travel was possible, would you go back in time or ahead? Why?

C: I would go back in time and spend more time with my Granma.  Miss that lady so much!

J: I’d love to spend a few hours with my mom’s paternal grandmother. Maybe then I’d know more about her than just her name… Do you have a favourite colour? Are there any colours you really DON’T like?

C: Purple, Pink, Teal or Black are my favorite colors.  I tend to dislike oranges, yellows, and reds.

J: We’re kindred spirits! What would your dream car be?

C: A 1967 Mustang! We actually found one on FB market place and bought it about a year ago…but it still needs a lot of work!

J: How awesome is that?! Will you paint it purple? You don’t have to answer that. Last nosy question. If you could only eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be?

C: Love me some Sushi!!

J: You can have ALL of mine. Thanks for letting us peek into your world. Now I should spend some time outside before it gets too cold. Enjoy your month in the Spotlight!

Faithful readers, Christie is hosting the Designer Spotlight Challenge this month and is providing all of us with her Daily Download kit. And… she has this little gift for everybody. Check it out!!

Well. 2021 is 3/4 over already! I know most of us will be happy to have this year in the rear view mirror. See you again soon!

 

Fresh Baked: OCT 1, 2021, DSD, NEW Guests, NEW Free With Purchase, Monthly Mix, and More

Welcome to October! I thought we had a lot going on last month. This may set the record for biggest post we’ve done. When you have the Buffet, Fresh Baked and DSD all on one day, it’s bound to be a big deal.

First a peek at the fun going on in the forum and the store for DSD. There are a so many things happening. And these colors. I so love these for fall.

The designers have outdone themselves for DSD.

Don’t forget to check out the Buffet Bundles. One easy click to add bundles of Buffet goodies to your cart.

Look at these colors. With it being October, there are a lot of Halloween kits in this Buffet grouping.

We also have new Fresh Baked Items.

POLKA DOT CHICKS

MEMORY MOSAIC

Remember any $10 spent in the store gets you this great collab. Are you ready for some {autumn dew}?

This new Monthly Mix kit is just so cute. I love the little gnomes.

Now to the Octoberr Daily Download Sneak Peek. This month’s Daily Download is from Scrappin Serenity.

https://gingerscraps.net/gsblog/2021/10/dd-oct-1-3/

We have TWO Guest Designers for October!

Dunia Designs

Bio:

Hi girls! My name is Dunia. I’m originally from Brazil but living for the past 5 years in Michigan. I live with my DH my three kids and my dog Chewie. I’m addicted to coca-cola, chocolate, books and binge-watching series
I’m a designer for over 7 years and I love to create fun, colorful and useful stuff for you to keep your memories alive. And I’m so excited to be a guest at Ginger Scraps this month!

The Scrappy Kat

Bio:

Hello, my name is Katina Curten, but I’m also known as The Scrappy Kat. I have been a digital scrapbooking designer since May of 2009. You may remember me from my 2 previous stores, Stuff to Scrap and Scraps N Pieces. Once those stores closed, I took a 5 year hiatus to raise my son. Now that he is a teenager and I have more time on my hands, I am back to designing. Digital scrapbooking is one of my true loves and I’m so glad to be back at it and to being a part of the wonderful digiscrap community that I missed so much once again.

Take a look at the new challenge reward kit. If you complete any 10 challenges this month, you get this gorgeous collab as a reward!

Tutorial Tuesday (Tips and Tricks)

It’s Almost DIGITAL SCRAPBOOKING DAY!!

Hey all you GingerScrappers! Digital Scrapbooking Day is coming up fast!! It’s on Saturday, October 2 and it’s going to be a blast. But don’t let “Day” throw you off. It’s not just a day, it’s a week-long celebration of our hobby and it’s always epic. This year’s theme is just perfect. Ginger has given me the go-ahead to share this sneak peak with you. Drum roll please!

All the digital scrapbooking stores around the worldwide web have special events and sales. Here at GingerScraps, there are a bunch of grab bags specifically designed for DSD, special challenges, another scavenger hunt, and a free-with-$20-purchase MEGA collab. (I’ve seen the MEGA collab… you’re going to love it!!!! It has about 100 papers… and the palette is beautiful.) Other stores will have designer blog hops and special events on their sites too…

So start with a PLAN! Don’t just jump into the deep end. Check out the forums at your favourite stores to see what they have going on. Then make yourself a calendar of events. Set some reminders so you don’t miss the entry deadlines, speed scraps or chats. If you’ve ever missed out on something amazing by a matter of an hour, you’ll understand the need for some nudges.

Make sure you have hard drive space for your purchases and freebies. Or invest in some thumb drives or an EHD to transfer some of your older stuff to so you have lots of room for your downloads. That MEGA is going to need a bunch of room. Label this extra storage right away so you don’t forget what you’ve put on it. Forgetting to label them could mean you lose track of all the awesome kits you’ve moved and you don’t want that! I have a brand new 6TB EHD just waiting for me to fill it up.

Set a BUDGET! It’s way too easy to overspend when you’re surrounded by smokin’ hot deals, and PayPal makes it painless… until later. Figure out how much you have to spend, and stick with it. I usually save a bit of money so I can spend $20-25 per favourite digishop (I have 3 that I like a lot) without feeling guilty. (With the slightly stronger Canadian dollar this week, I might be able to make my money go a bit farther. As long as there isn’t some catastrophe here that causes our currency to tank. ‘Cause that’s never happened before….. 😉 )

Don’t feel obligated to participate in anything that isn’t going to make you happy. If you don’t have time to join in on the games in the Forum, don’t worry about it! If you aren’t into speed scraps, that’s great! Extra challenges might be fun, but if you have better things to do, you have better things to do. Freebies take up a lot of space, both on your computer and in your head; if you don’t think you’ll ever use what the designer is giving away, you don’t have to take it. This is especially true of blog hop freebies; the topic and palette may be really exciting, but there will be some designers’ contributions that don’t fit into your style of scrapping, so don’t download them. Believe me, you won’t miss them.

While you’re waiting for the festivities to begin, go through your photos and choose some for those challenges you just won’t be able to resist. Let your family know when you’re going to need some uninterrupted time and don’t stay up too late! Because there’s still Black Friday next month – we have to pace ourselves!

Sharing our stories is important, both for us now and for those who come after us. The last 18 months have had quite an impact on all of us in one way or another. Some of us have lost loved ones, some of us have been sick ourselves, some of us have worked harder than ever before to help others and some of us have channeled our energies in new directions. But we all have learned what matters and what doesn’t. Let’s celebrate ourselves!

Fresh Baked: September 24, 2021

Here we are at another Friday. And another end of the month. I don’t know why it amazes me that time seems to fly, but it does. Every month I am blown away by how fast it all goes.

Remember when you spend $10 in the store, you get this great kit for free.

There is a wide range of topics and colors in this week’s new releases.

Have you grabbed the Monthly Mix? Only on more week to pick it up at this reduced price.

And you have one more week to complete those challenges. You only need to complete 10 challenges to get this great reward.

Tutorial Tuesday (Individual Style)

Jumpstart Your Layouts!

So how many of you are Challenge fans? If you aren’t, you should be!! The GingerBread Ladies designers are incredibly generous with their talents both through their participation in the GingerBread Ladies‘ collaborations: Monthly Mix, Free-with-Purchase and Challenge rewards, and within the Challenges themselves. Did you know there are freebies included in several Challenges EVERY month? Brushes, templates, word art, mini kits, add-ons – so many gifts!! Sheri, whose design handle is Jumpstart Designs, provides a mini kit every month in the Jumpstart Your Layouts Challenge (although these minis are the same size as some designers’ full kits…) and they’re amazing. I posted my JSYL Challenge layout to the thread in the Forum and couldn’t help but notice how every scrapper’s layout – using the identical collection of supplies – looked SO different. So I thought we could talk a bit about how we all have such individual approaches to creativity.

This is the preview for the Jumpstart Your Layout Challenge. Like all of Sheri‘s kits, the colour palette is versatile, it’s a bit grungy, a bit pretty, a bit sophisticated and 100% awesome.

A-M chose to use only the cream and brown parts of the kit. Her layout is simple, but eye-catching. Having a black-and-white photo as the centerpiece was genius.

Breoni too chose mainly the neutrals, but added a couple of aqua pops… which are the perfect accompaniments for her photo. Her positioning of the metal tag and ribbon element frames her face and really leads the eye to her photo.

In keeping with the mostly cream background, next up is this beauty. What makes this layout by nimble4u truly stunning is the way she’s used her photo. She embellished with restraint and the sentimental feel of the photo is the star of the show.

Roxana has added a bit more of the aqua to her layout. The large word art is perfectly displayed against the aqua paper and the photo she chose adds a bit of whimsy. I think she’s used every single item in the kit as well, even though it’s not a requirement.

Kristal’s background is also mainly cream, but with some taupe details that adds to the seaside impact of her photos. Masking the boat photo with some aqua behind it makes it look like the water continues outside the photo. Genius!

Maskyra used the papers with such panache! The grungy, rubbed, torn and splattered background is a masterpiece! Her layout is a bit of a segué from mostly neutral/cream background into more colour detail.

This layout by beckturn moves us to an aqua background with a beautiful tear revealing the shades-of-brown striped paper behind it. I love the way she repeated her heritage photo with a tighter crop on the girls’ faces.

What immediately caught my eye about jcfdelaware‘s layout is the undulating anchor behind her photos. With aqua paint behind all the brown paper hexagons, it moves the eye across the page. and the large word art tucks into the lower left corner so neatly.

LisaCampbell‘s layout doesn’t really use a lot of aqua elements, but it “reads” as an aqua background, thanks to the curved paper cuts and aqua paint wrapping around her photos. (

Alasandra‘s layout just screams HAPPY to me! The aqua elements pop right off the paper.

I love how Pippin has turned her photo to sepia and makes it look like it grew out of the paper behind it. The dark brown border draws the eye, the bokeh leads it to the photo and the clusters keep it moving.

This layout is so perfect in every respect! It’s from the creative mind of kabrak1207 and is gently shifting us toward a darker brown palette. Her use of the scalloped borders is clever, and really frames the focal photo perfectly.

MomDoc_99 went monochromatic with the browns and it works very well. The scatters echo the circles on the background paper  and by framing the photos inside a circular paper mat and creating a similar frame for her title, her repeating shapes create a pleasing layout.

Here, DebraB has given us a grid-style layout on a deep brown background that makes the photos stand out. The border along the left draws attention to her journaling. I love how she used only part of the word art on a paper strip to customize her look.

And last… this layout by galavictor is completely different! She’s changed the Blend Mode on the striped paper and the floral aqua paper to accent the orange in her photo, created a bokeh effect with the scatters while also making brilliant use of masking to blend papers together and fade the photo into them. She applied some Layer Styles to the word art too. So much creativity!!

There you have it, fifteen unique layouts using a single kit. (You can see my own vision for this kit here. And yes, my granddaughter does eat non-stop.) What might YOU do with this FRE-E-E-E-E-E-E kit?

 

PS… What do you think about a Challenge spotlight post every once in awhile?

PDF Version: https://bit.ly/2ZeFvb3

 

 

Fresh Baked: September 17, 2021

Oh my goodness. It’s already mid-September and the season is definitely changing. It’s getting to be cooler here and I am loving it.

Remember when you spend $10 in the store, you get this great kit for free.

Let’s see a sampling of what is new in the store this week.

Have you picked up the September Monthly Mix? It’s great for those school pics.

Are you working on those challenges? Just 10 completed challenges gets you this great kit as a reward.